Arts Council of Northern Ireland

The Funding and Development Agency
for The Arts in Northern Ireland

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Artists and arts organisations offer free activities to help people stay well at home!

Thursday 26th March 2020 at 1pm 1 Comments


The arts are powerful!  Taking part in arts activities is good for our mental and physical wellbeing and it brings people and communities closer together, both emotionally and creatively. At this particularly difficult time of social isolation and Covid19, all of the region’s galleries, theatres and musical hubs have temporarily closed, but fear not! Our amazing artists and arts organisations have been working hard behind the scenes to bring their wonderful arts online for audiences to enjoy.  Read on to check our top tips for cultural activities to watch out for online.

The Verbal Arts Centre, based in Derry, has launched, Well Read, a chatbot based website to help build the emotional wellbeing of children, aged 8-11, through conversation and storytelling.  To take part visit

Get creative with Derry’s, Void Gallery Online who have an online tour of their current exhibition by Ima-Abasi Okon.  They will also explore the 15 year exhibition history of the Void programme through images, talks and videos and will post suggested readings, artist talks and links to films by artists.

Void Engage will also take place online featuring activities designed to keep adults and kids entertained with videos by artist-facilitators, Karen Cassidy and Sinead Crumlish.  These videos will be posted on Facebook, Instagram, and their YouTube channel to re-visit.

Also each week while Void gallery is closed, they will showcase different artists who use a specific medium in their work, an excellent opportunity to learn more about visual art.  For all of this visit

Belfast Exposed Photographic Gallery has launched a new series of daily activities for children and young people to take part in.  They also plan to create online photography workshops in the near future.  For information on daily activities visit

The multi award-winning, Northern Ireland Opera, has started a weekly Opera Club offering participants the opportunity to watch a classic opera and an opera that’s something a bit different and then take part in discussions afterwards with their artistic director to explore the works further.  They also supply context and production notes in advance.  Visit and

Ryan Vail and Elma Orkestra unveiled a brand new documentary about their award-winning Arts Council of Northern Ireland supported project, Borders, watch it back here

Golden Thread Gallery may be closed but you can still check out their current exhibition, ‘Dissolving Histories: An Unreliable Presence’ on their website at

Golden Thread Gallery has also announced the new #GTGtakeover where over the next few weekends artists in their current exhibitions will take over their Instagram page, a wonderful chance to dig more into their works!  This weekend it’s the turn of artist, Dougal McKenzie, whose exhibition 'More Bad News' is in their Project Space.  Visit

Local musical heroes, Snow Patrol, will perform a live gig on their Instagram page Thursday 26th March at 7pm promising to perform a selection of some of their greatest records.  Visit

World Theatre Day is this Friday 27th March and to mark it the Lyric Theatre tells us to tune in to watch the film adaption of David Ireland’s award-winning play, Cyprus Avenue, starring legendary actor, Stephen Rea.  Commissioned by The Space, this film mixes live capture of performance from the iconic stage production with location shooting in Belfast.  The Abbey Theatre in partnership with Royal Court Theatre and The Space, will stream the film for free at noon on their Facebook, Twitter and You Tube pages.  Watch it here

Rockjam and Music Generation DLR have released a new resource to teach people to play ukulele online through a series of free video tutorials featuring the basics of playing popular songs from Toy Story to Leonard Cohen and more.  Visit


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